The Christmas pace is hotting up for me, both at home and at work.

This year, it has felt like some customers have held off until later in November to do their Christmas shopping, but now they are out with a vengeance and we are achieving some fantastic results.

This week stock-holding levels in both of my shops are peaking, with product coming in thick and fast from central distribution centres. Our stock handlers have had to be fleet of foot to keep the stock moving and, at times, it has felt like the building is bulging at the seams. The good news is that stock is going out in greater quantities than it is coming in.

We are in volume mode on the shopfloor, making sure that best selling lines are bulked out for self-service. It is also really important to make sure that the cash register banks are working efficiently. I have had great fun helping out in different areas of the shops on the tills.

Tomorrow could be the busiest Saturday of the year and I am going to be on our Christmas stationery and gift food tills. It’s a great way of seeing what our customers are buying and finding out how they have been enjoying their shopping trip. Will pre-Christmas sales records be beaten? I am convinced they will.

And there’s no let up in the pace at home. My two young boys are certainly getting revved up. Last week, we had great family fun making the Christmas cake and Christmas puddings on “stir-up Sunday”. Next on my agenda, though, is the dreaded Christmas card list and completing my own Christmas shopping.

Store manager’s diary:MAGGIE PORTEOUS, JOHN LEWIS, MANCHESTER